Sending your child off to summer camp can be daunting – especially if it’s their first trip to camp or first overnight camp. We’ve compiled some useful tips on what to pack and how to prepare for your child’s first trip to camp.

1. Find a Camp

Search accredited camps in your area to find the right day or night camp for your tot. Check with your little one’s day care or pre-school to see if they offer summer camps or recommend one locally. Once you have found a local camp, schedule a visit to make sure both you and your child feel comfortable with the choice.

2. Stock Up

Stock up on everything your little one needs for camp. The camp will usually provide a guide or shopping list to help you prepare ahead of time. From sunblock to drinking bottles, be sure not to skimp on the necessities.

3. A Place for Everything

Make sure your little one has a unique backpack or overnight bag and lunch bag so they won’t get mixed up with another camper’s items. Prevent lost lunch bags by finding a lunch bag that attaches directly to your child’s backpack.

(image via Six Hearts Blog)

4. Go Label Crazy

Be sure to add labels to drinking bottles, backpacks, snack containers, etc. When a heavy-duty Sharpie won’t cut it, we love using Mabel’s Labels dishwasher-safe labels.

5. Pack Smart

Pack extra socks, underwear, shirts, etc. Messes are inevitable, so ensure your child has an extra outfit hand to change into. Avoid packing any nice, new clothing for the same reason.

6. Relax!

While it may be scary to send your tot off to camp for the first time, keep in mind that he or she will be enjoying hours of fun throughout the day. Summer camp is a rite of passage that creates fond memories for years to come.